Mosa Tsay is a cellist and music spatialist based in New York City.
Mosa is pursuing a Master of Music at The Juilliard School as a student of Joel Krosnick. She is a recipient of the Irene Land Scholarship and Irene Diamond Graduate Fellowship. Mosa performs in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center with AXIOM, Juilliard Orchestra, and New Juilliard Ensemble, but is also a presenter of chamber and contemporary music in non-traditional concert spaces.
Formerly the Artistic Director of Celli@Berkeley and a San Francisco-based collective of cellists, Mosa commissioned and organized premieres of new works for celli and electronics in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2014, she co-produced Celli@Berkeley’s debut CD album in collaboration with composer Jared Redmond and Grammy-winning Barry Phillips.
Her performances have earned top award recognition at the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) National Young Artist’s Competition, American String Teachers Association (ASTA) Solo Competition, and H.B. Goodlin Scholarship Competition. She was a featured soloist with the UC Berkeley Symphony Orchestra as winner of UC Berkeley’s Concerto Competition in 2013 and 2015 (Schelomo and Schumann Cello Concerto). Other notable performances have been in masterclasses for Yo-Yo Ma, Frans Helmerson, Hans Jørgen Jensen, Paul Katz, David Geber, Tamás Varga (Vienna Philharmonic), and members of the Juilliard String Quartet and Kronos Quartet. She has performed with Joseph Silverstein, Danish String Quartet, Eco Ensemble and participated in orchestral masterclasses with Gustavo Dudamel, Esa-Pekka Salonen, and Valery Gergiev. Her past summer engagements include Ensemble Evolution at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Fontainebleau, National Arts Centre Young Artists Program in Ottawa, Canada, St. Lawrence String Quartet Chamber Seminar at Stanford University, and Meadowmount School of Music as Jonathan Koh’s teaching assistant.
Mosa graduated from University of California, Berkeley in 2014 with bachelor's degrees in Music and in Society and Environment. She wrote an honors thesis on the topic of “Silence: In Performance and Within the Performer,” an analysis of the role of silence in music by J.S. Bach, Hans Werner Henze and John Cage. Mosa was appointed principal cellist of the UC Berkeley Symphony Orchestra shortly after beginning her cello studies with Jonathan Koh in 2011. She was awarded the Eisner Award, Mary Nuñes Souza Prize and is the 2016 recipient of the Alfred Hertz Traveling Fellowship.
Born to Taiwanese parents, she began playing cello at age seven in San Diego. Her past teachers and mentors include Jonathan Koh, Catherine Godden, Lu-Yan Guo, David Milnes, Mary Gerard, Hernan Constantino, and Thomas Stauffer.
Mosa performs on a rare unstamped 19th century cello, a loan made possible with generous support from Mrs. Taeja Kim Lee and Dr. Howard Lee and for winning Doublestop Foundation’s Instrument Loan Competition in 2014.
As a concert organizer, Mosa enjoys presenting music outside of traditional performance halls.
In a special partnership with Groupmuse in summer 2017, she presented two sold-out Massivemuses - at a chocolate factory in Brooklyn and a coworking space in San Francisco. To increase awareness of interdisciplinary collaborations between movement, electronics, and music, she invited composer Scott Rubin to share with the Groupmusers in San Francisco a piece featuring a dancer manipulating electronics using motion sensors.
In 2016, Mosa launched Celloscape, a collective of cellists in the San Francisco Bay Area dedicated to performing new music. The debut concert, held at Bruce Beasley's Sculpture Studio in Oakland, was generously sponsored by Mrs. Laurence Beasley, Jennifer Howard, Marco Rozzano, and Linda Barnett. The collective featured 14 cellists in the San Francisco Bay Area and 5 composers.
While a student at UC Berkeley and then freelancer after graduating, Mosa produced and programmed concerts for Celli@Berkeley, a 12-piece cello ensemble, in the Berkeley Art Museum that featured performances of:
joshua carro - spacial for 12 cellos - *World premiere
Georg K. Hilmarsson - Þú hrjúfa Fold for 8 cellos, tam tam and electronics - *World premiere
Jared Redmond - Deep Song for soprano and 12 cellos - *World premiere
Amadeus Regucera - OPEN for 3 cellos and electronics - *World premiere
Recordings of Note:
Mosa was featured in Kenny Mac's debut album Rise & Fall, released in 2016.
All project proposals are welcome. Anything involving space, light, color, electronics, succulents, silence, sculpture, linen, sound installations, improvisation, contact mics, etc.
All Groupmuse performance requests are also very welcome here!